On the road to victorious Christian living, there are battles along the way. You have to overcome your pride, selfish desires and fears. You have to deal with challenges big and small that stand between you and the abundant life God wants you to experience. You battle against the world, the flesh and the devil.
You will be tempted to fight battles in the way that everyone around you does, even if their methods are not in line with God’s Word. That way is not the best way. It may seem easier to avoid the battle altogether, resulting in unfaithfulness to God and less-than-victorious Christian living.
There is another way. It is the best way. It is God’s way. Just like the children of Israel at the base of the walls of Jericho, there is a way to win battles God’s way. And when you do, the results are glorious: God is glorified and you experience victory.
We walk with the Lord. God promised the children of Israel that they would have victory over Jericho. They clung to that promise. He also gave them clear instructions on what to do. Their battle strategy was to walk around the city walls of Jericho in the formation that the Lord described. The ark of the covenant was with them, symbolizing God’s presence among them. They walked with the Lord.
We walk with the Lord as we read the Bible, pray, and daily follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. We cling to his promises. We follow his instructions. When you approach each day as a walk with the Lord, it will change the way you fight your battles. You will depend on the Spirit for guidance rather than the ways of the world.
We wait on the Lord. The children of Israel marched around the city walls once on day one. God could have collapsed the walls on day one, but he did not. He asked them to walk a total of seven days, and on the seventh day they walked around seven times. He asked them to have seven priests carrying seven trumpets (shofars) ready to blow them at the announced time. Remember that the number seven in the Bible represents perfection or completion. In this story, it shows us that:
- God’s timing is perfect
- God’s plan is the best
- God’s victory is complete
Waiting and walking occur simultaneously. As we walk with the Lord, we wait on the Lord to deliver. And when he does, wow!
We want God to be famous. The gentleman who has been praying for a job for months, putting out resumes and going on interviews, when he gets a job, what should he do? Brag on himself or give glory to God? Give glory to God of course! The young couple who have had trouble conceiving a child, when they receive the confirmation that she is pregnant, what is the first thing they should do? Give glory to God!
For the children of Israel, when the walls of Jericho fell, did they take the credit? No. They gave glory to God.
No matter how big or small the battle, when we walk with the Lord and wait on the Lord and then the Lord brings victory, let us remember to make him famous. Tell people how he has brought the victory. He deserves our praise.
1 Now Jericho was strongly fortified because of the Israelites—no one leaving or entering. 2 The LORD said to Joshua, “Look, I have handed Jericho, its king, and its best soldiers over to you. 3 March around the city with all the men of war, circling the city one time. Do this for six days. 4 Have seven priests carry seven ram’s-horn trumpets in front of the ark. But on the seventh day, march around the city seven times, while the priests blow the trumpets. 5 When there is a prolonged blast of the horn and you hear its sound, have all the troops give a mighty shout. Then the city wall will collapse, and the troops will advance, each man straight ahead.”
6 So Joshua son of Nun summoned the priests and said to them, “Take up the ark of the covenant and have seven priests carry seven trumpets in front of the ark of the LORD.” 7 He said to the troops, “Move forward, march around the city, and have the armed men go ahead of the ark of the LORD.”
8 After Joshua had spoken to the troops, seven priests carrying seven trumpets before the LORD moved forward and blew the trumpets; the ark of the LORD‘s covenant followed them. 9 While the trumpets were blowing, the armed men went in front of the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard went behind the ark. 10 But Joshua had commanded the troops: “Do not shout or let your voice be heard. Don’t let one word come out of your mouth until the time I say, ‘Shout!’ Then you are to shout.” 11 So the ark of the LORD was carried around the city, circling it once. They returned to the camp and spent the night there.
12 Joshua got up early the next morning. The priests took the ark of the LORD, 13 and the seven priests carrying seven trumpets marched in front of the ark of the LORD. While the trumpets were blowing, the armed men went in front of them, and the rear guard went behind the ark of the LORD. 14 On the second day they marched around the city once and returned to the camp. They did this for six days.